Dem lawmaker calls for DeVos to resign, cites use of 'racist research'

Rep. Katherine ClarkKatherine Marlea ClarkGun control group rolls out House endorsements Pelosi scrambles to secure quick passage of coronavirus aid Democrat says House vote on trillion aid deal could fall to Friday MORE (D-Mass.) on Monday said Education Secretary Betsy DeVosElizabeth (Betsy) Dee DeVosDeVos says she'll ensure public schools send CARES Act funds to private schools Senators ask DeVos to adjust FAFSA form due to the coronavirus pandemic Don't abandon standardized testing in schools next year — rethink it MORE should resign, saying the Trump administration official used "racist research" and failed to stick up for children.

“I am calling for her resignation because she has failed to live up to her basic job responsibilities: making sure that our kids have fair and equitable access to a great public education and to keep them safe,” the Massachusetts Democrat said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe."

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“She rescinded civil rights policy and cherry-picked racist research to back it up. What she did was roll back Obama-era protections for children of color who we know are disciplined at far greater rates than their white peers,” Clark added. “Her fundamental failure to stick up for children as secretary as Education makes her unfit to carry on this job.”

Education press secretary Liz Hill told The Hill that Clark’s call for DeVos to resign is “political opportunism.”

“The Secretary rescinded this guidance months ago because she heard repeatedly that it wasn’t working for students or for teachers. For the Congresswoman to show up today and try to grab headlines is nothing more than political opportunism at its worst,” Hill said in a statement.

“Secretary DeVos always has and always will fight to make sure every student is treated like an individual and has the opportunity to learn and grow in an environment that is safe and nurturing.”

The Trump administration in December proposed rolling back Obama-era policies aimed at reducing racial disparities in the way children are disciplined at school. The move was based on a federal commission that said the policies encouraged violence at schools.

DeVos's agency has also been criticized for rolling back several policies aimed at protecting LGBT individuals and addressing campus sexual assault.